The University of New Mexico Water Resources Program will conduct open forums for a new director beginning Monday, May 3. 

The position became available when current director John Fleck recently announced his retirement to work on a new book about the Rio Grande. 

Three finalists being considered for the position will take part in the upcoming public forums.

Scott Verhines  |  Public forum on May 3, 3:30-4:30 p.m.
Senior Principle, Stantec; Former New Mexico State Engineer  |  Vitae
Public forum link:

Rebecca Bixby  |  Public forum on May 4, 3:30-4:30 p.m.
Assistant Research Professor, Department of Biology, UNM  |  Vitae
Public forum link:

Phillip King  |  Public forum on May 5, 3:30-4:30 p.m.
Professor and Associate Department Head, Department of Civil and Agricultural Engineering, NMSU  |  Vitae
Public forum link:

To fill out candidate evaluation forms, visit Water Resources Program finalists. 

Author John Fleck
John Fleck

Fleck has been director of the program since 2016. His work, as an academic and a writer for popular audiences, is focused on the Colorado River Basin - its problems as climate change collides with population growth, and its solutions, as communities learn to collaborate in the task of using less water.

His service as Water Resources Program director is an extension of that work, helping a new generation of water managers develop the technical skills and policy understanding needed to solve the region's problems.

“The job has exceeded the idle fantasies of my younger years,” Fleck wrote in a recent blog post. “So much fun to teach, and learn from, UNM Water Resources Students. So much fun to spend my days on a university campus with all the thinking and libraries and trees.”

As for the four finalists, Fleck says he has nothing but optimism.

“All four are on my list of ‘smart people from whom I’ve learned everything I know about water.’ For the program, which I love, exciting times are ahead,” he wrote.

The UNM Water Resources Program is a regionally prominent center of expertise on water-related issues and training for environmental professionals, promoting fair, healthy and sustainable solutions to the challenges of water use in New Mexico and the southwest.